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Plant Defense Response to Microbial, Herbivorous, and Environmental Interactions

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Plant Sciences".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 May 2024 | Viewed by 7479

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Forest Resources, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Chonnam National University, Gwangju 61186, Republic of Korea
Interests: plant diseases; insect pests; plant–microbial interactions; plant defense mechanisms; biological control; plant growth promotion
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Plants are the primary producers and thus the main source of nutrients for other organisms including fungi, bacteria, and animals. Some organisms have developed mutualistic relationships with plants, while others are destructive. Plants have evolved numerous signaling pathways to detect and respond to fungal, bacterial, and viral infections, herbivorous attacks, and abiotic stress through the biosynthesis of structural and physiological protein-based defense mechanisms. This Special Issue will accept articles reporting on inducible plant defense responses including chemical defense systems, such as microbial-associated molecular patterns (MAMPs), hypersensitive responses, pathogen-degrading enzymes, pathogenic-related (PR) proteins (like defensins, chitinases, β-1,3-glucanases, thaumatin-like, proteases, peroxidase, salicylate, and jasmonate) and toxic chemicals (such as terpenes, phenolics, and histamines), and mechanisms by which pathogens overcome plant resistance. The Special Issue will also consider studies reporting mechanisms of mutualistic plant–microbial interactions, microbial-induced plant defense, and microbial chemicals used in biological control, stress tolerance, and plant growth stimulation.

Prof. Dr. Young-sang Ahn
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • plant pathogenic infections
  • insect pest damage
  • abiotic stress
  • plant/microbial chemical signaling
  • innate immunity
  • systemic acquired resistance (SAR)
  • pathogen-related proteins
  • plant defense enzymes
  • plant growth hormones

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 16155 KiB  
Article
Bacillus amyloliquefaciens AK-12 Helps Rapeseed Establish a Protection against Brevicoryne brassicae
by Shixiong Qian, Ayesha Ahmed, Pengbo He, Pengfei He, Shahzad Munir, Mengyuan Xia, Chaoyun Tang, Ping Tang, Zaiqiang Wang, Rizwan Khan, Xingyu Li, Yixin Wu and Yueqiu He
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(21), 15893; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms242115893 - 02 Nov 2023
Viewed by 833
Abstract
Aphids are a serious threat to rapeseed (Brassica napus L.) production, and cause unmanageable loss. Therefore, effective prevention and management strategies are urgently required to avoid losses. Bacillus amyloliquefaciens AK-12 isolated from a dead aphid with aphicidal activity was tagged with a [...] Read more.
Aphids are a serious threat to rapeseed (Brassica napus L.) production, and cause unmanageable loss. Therefore, effective prevention and management strategies are urgently required to avoid losses. Bacillus amyloliquefaciens AK-12 isolated from a dead aphid with aphicidal activity was tagged with a green fluorescent protein through a natural transformation. The transformed strains were checked for stability and growth, and the best-performing strain was tested for its colonization inside and outside the rapeseed plant. The stability of AK-12-GFP reached more than 95%, and the growth curve was consistent with that of AK-12. After 30 days of treatment, the colonization of 1 × 106 CFU/g was recorded in rapeseed leaves. Interestingly, AK-12 reduced the aphid transmission rate compared with the control and improved the growth of the rapeseed seedlings. Meanwhile, the AK-12 strain also exhibited phosphorus, potassium-solubilizing, and nitrogen-fixing activity, and produced 2.61 µg/mL of IAA at 24 h. Regulation in the activity of four enzymes was detected after the AK-12 treatment. Phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) was recorded at a maximum of 86.84 U/g after 36 h, and catalase (CAT) decreased after 48 h; however, peroxidase (POD) and polyphenol oxidase (PPO) reached the maximum within 12 h of AK-12 application. Additionally, important resistance genes related to these enzymes were upregulated, indicating the activation of a defense response in the rapeseed against aphids. In conclusion, defense enzymes and defense-related gene activation could improve the pest resistance in rapeseed, which has good application prospects for the future to be developed into biopesticide. Full article
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11 pages, 1354 KiB  
Article
Entomopathogenic Potential of Bacillus velezensis CE 100 for the Biological Control of Termite Damage in Wooden Architectural Buildings of Korean Cultural Heritage
by Jae-Hyun Moon, Henry B. Ajuna, Sang-Jae Won, Vantha Choub, Su-In Choi, Ju-Yeol Yun, Won Joung Hwang, Sang Wook Park and Young Sang Ahn
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(9), 8189; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24098189 - 03 May 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1560
Abstract
Biocontrol strategies are gaining tremendous attention in insect pest management, such as controlling termite damage, due to the growing awareness of the irreparable harm caused by the continuous use of synthetic pesticides. This study examines the proteolytic and chitinolytic activities of Bacillus velezensis [...] Read more.
Biocontrol strategies are gaining tremendous attention in insect pest management, such as controlling termite damage, due to the growing awareness of the irreparable harm caused by the continuous use of synthetic pesticides. This study examines the proteolytic and chitinolytic activities of Bacillus velezensis CE 100 and its termiticidal effect through cuticle degradation. The proteolytic and chitinolytic activities of B. velezensis CE 100 systematically increased with cell growth to the respective peaks of 68.3 and 128.3 units/mL after seven days of inoculation, corresponding with the highest cell growth of 16 × 107 colony-forming units (CFU)/mL. The in vitro termiticidal assay showed that B. velezensis CE 100 caused a rapid and high rate of termite mortality, with a median lethal time (LT50) of >1 h and the highest mortality rates of 91.1% and 92.2% recorded at 11 h and 12 h in the bacterial broth culture and crude enzyme fraction, respectively. In addition to broken setae and deformed sockets, termites treated with the bacterial broth culture exhibited degraded epicuticles, while the crude enzyme fraction caused severe disintegration of both the epicuticle and endocuticle. These results indicate the tremendously higher potential of B. velezensis CE 100 in the biological control of subterranean termites compared to the previously used entomopathogenic bacteria. Full article
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20 pages, 3851 KiB  
Article
The Phaseolus vulgaris Receptor-Like Kinase PvFER1 and the Small Peptides PvRALF1 and PvRALF6 Regulate Nodule Number as a Function of Nitrate Availability
by Jorge Solís-Miranda, Marco A. Juárez-Verdayes, Noreide Nava, Paul Rosas, Alfonso Leija-Salas, Luis Cárdenas and Carmen Quinto
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(6), 5230; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24065230 - 09 Mar 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1792
Abstract
Legumes associate with Gram-negative soil bacteria called rhizobia, resulting in the formation of a nitrogen-fixing organ, the nodule. Nodules are an important sink for photosynthates for legumes, so these plants have developed a systemic regulation mechanism that controls their optimal number of [...] Read more.
Legumes associate with Gram-negative soil bacteria called rhizobia, resulting in the formation of a nitrogen-fixing organ, the nodule. Nodules are an important sink for photosynthates for legumes, so these plants have developed a systemic regulation mechanism that controls their optimal number of nodules, the so-called autoregulation of nodulation (AON) pathway, to balance energy costs with the benefits of nitrogen fixation. In addition, soil nitrate inhibits nodulation in a dose-dependent manner, through systemic and local mechanisms. The CLE family of peptides and their receptors are key to tightly controlling these inhibitory responses. In the present study, a functional analysis revealed that PvFER1, PvRALF1, and PvRALF6 act as positive regulators of the nodule number in growth medium containing 0 mM of nitrate but as negative regulators in medium with 2 and 5 mM of nitrate. Furthermore, the effect on nodule number was found to be consistent with changes in the expression levels of genes associated with the AON pathway and with the nitrate-mediated regulation of nodulation (NRN). Collectively, these data suggest that PvFER1, PvRALF1, and PvRALF6 regulate the optimal number of nodules as a function of nitrate availability. Full article
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Review

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16 pages, 1128 KiB  
Review
Advances in the Biosynthesis of Terpenoids and Their Ecological Functions in Plant Resistance
by Changyan Li, Wenjun Zha, Wei Li, Jianyu Wang and Aiqing You
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(14), 11561; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms241411561 - 17 Jul 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2619
Abstract
Secondary metabolism plays an important role in the adaptation of plants to their environments, particularly by mediating bio-interactions and protecting plants from herbivores, insects, and pathogens. Terpenoids form the largest group of plant secondary metabolites, and their biosynthesis and regulation are extremely complicated. [...] Read more.
Secondary metabolism plays an important role in the adaptation of plants to their environments, particularly by mediating bio-interactions and protecting plants from herbivores, insects, and pathogens. Terpenoids form the largest group of plant secondary metabolites, and their biosynthesis and regulation are extremely complicated. Terpenoids are key players in the interactions and defense reactions between plants, microorganisms, and animals. Terpene compounds are of great significance both to plants themselves and the ecological environment. On the one hand, while protecting plants themselves, they can also have an impact on the environment, thereby affecting the evolution of plant communities and even ecosystems. On the other hand, their economic value is gradually becoming clear in various aspects of human life; their potential is enormous, and they have broad application prospects. Therefore, research on terpenoids is crucial for plants, especially crops. This review paper is mainly focused on the following six aspects: plant terpenes (especially terpene volatiles and plant defense); their ecological functions; their biosynthesis and transport; related synthesis genes and their regulation; terpene homologues; and research and application prospects. We will provide readers with a systematic introduction to terpenoids covering the above aspects. Full article
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

  • plant pathogenic infections
  • insect pest damage
  • abiotic stress
  • plant/microbial chemical signaling
  • innate immunity
  • systemic acquired resistance (SAR)
  • pathogen-related proteins
  • plant defense enzymes
  • plant growth hormones
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